Auto Insurance | Boizelle Insurance Partnership - Page 2

Auto Insurance Coverage for Road Trips & Vacations

Are you planning a family road trip? It’s great to have the opportunity to get away with family. But, unfortunately, we can’t always prevent accidents from happening. Before hitting the road, there are several important points about how auto insurance works that you should be aware of. By understanding how auto insurance works, you will also be able to make sure your auto insurance coverage is sufficient.

If You are Taking Your Own Car

If you plan to take a road trip with family or friends and you plan to use your own car, there are a few things you should know: First, always understand that the auto insurance policy follows the car. That means that if you allow your friend Johnny to drive your car during your journey on the road and Johnny gets into an at-fault accident, it will not be Johnny’s auto insurance that kicks in to cover any damages to your car or the car of the other party. Your insurance will pay for the damages. And, depending on how severe the damages are, you may be forced to fork up some cash out of your own pocket if your policy’s limits are exhausted.

Also, each state is going to have different requirements related to auto insurance coverages and the minimum amounts of coverage you will need to have from a legal standpoint. For example, Maryland’s auto insurance limits are: $30,000 minimum per person/$60,000 minimum per accident/$15,000 minimum for property damage. Uninsured Motorist Bodily Injury Coverage is $30,000 minimum per person and $60,000 per accident. To compare, New York’s state limit requirements are: $25,000 for Bodily Injury per person, $50,000 if one person is killed in an accident, $50,000 for bodily injury and $100,000 if two people are killed in an auto accident. Property Damage limits are $10,000. If you have an auto insurance policy in one state and get into an accident in another state, your auto insurance company will bump up your limits to that of the other state’s. Be careful not to disqualify yourself from this policy by doing something that is deemed unlawful i.e. driving will intoxicated.

If You Are Renting a Car

If you have comprehensive coverage for a vehicle that is listed on your auto policy, the cost of a rental car is covered in the event of a covered comprehensive loss. This coverage is $20 per day/$900 per loss in Maryland, in Virginia, the coverage limit is $600, and $15 per day or $450 per loss in North Carolina.

Driving to Mexico

If you drive to Mexico, understand that rental cars purchased in the United States are not covered once you cross the border into Mexico. However, if you are driving a car that you own yourself, collision coverage will apply in the event of an accident. Rental cars that are obtained in the United States are not covered overseas.

 

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10 Safety Tips for Driving in the Rain

Driving in the rain can be tricky, and if you’re not careful, could put you in a dangerous situation. Rainy conditions directly correlate with higher numbers of auto accidents. Understanding that these conditions can affect your ability to safely operate your vehicle can help you to drive more safely.

If Possible, Wait for the Weather to Improve

If you do not feel comfortable driving in the rain and can delay your commute until the weather improves, do it. It’s not worth putting yourself in danger if it is not necessary to drive in wet conditions.

Double Check Your Car’s Equipment

You always want the equipment in your car to be functioning properly, especially in rainy conditions. Before taking your commute, inspect your headlights, tail lights, and windshield wipers to make sure they are working properly. The tread on your tires should also be in good condition. If your tires are worn down, you are at much higher risk of hydroplaning and losing control of your vehicle.

Slow Down

Following the speed limit is always a good idea when you’re driving. In wet conditions, it’s actually not a bad idea to slow down because your visibility may be impaired when it’s raining heavily and there may be excess water on road surfaces, making it more difficult to come to a complete stop when you need to.

Turn on Your Headlights

Again, visibility is always important, especially in rainy conditions. Not only will you be able to see better, but other cars around you will be able to see you and react accordingly.

Use Your Windshield Wipers

It’s important to use your windshield wipers when it’s raining. Using them will greatly improve your visibility. In addition to windshield wipers, there are several other products you can use to combat the rain from impairing your vision when you’re behind the wheel. Certain sprays can be applied to your windshield that will allow the water to bounce off of the glass. Still, even when using these products, it is recommended that you still use your windshield wipers.

Maintain a Safe Distance Between Cars

Because it will take you longer to come to a complete stop in rainy weather because excess water can lift your tires off of the road surface, it is important to keep a safe distance between your car and the vehicle in front of you. If you see large puddles of water on the road surface, consider changing lanes to move around them. As always, be aware of other cars around and always use your turn signal.

Avoid Heavy Braking

It is not recommended that you use cruise control when you are driving in wet conditions. This may seem obvious, but it is important to maintain your focus and attention on your need to brake when you need to and accelerate when the time calls for it. Always pay attention to the road in front of you and minimize distractions.

Watch Out for Standing Water

Standing Water can present a danger to you and others. It’s best to avoid standing water when you can. It can grab your tires and cause you to hydroplane, thus possibly making you lose control of your vehicle. As mentioned earlier, be on the lookout for other cars around you and use your turn signal and side mirrors to notify cars that you intend to change lanes and you can see if you have enough distance between you to move to another lane.

Let Off the Gas When Hydroplaning

It is not uncommon to hydroplane in rainy weather conditions. If this does happen to you, stay calm and gently take your foot off of the accelerator. Steer your car in the direction the front of your car needs to go in. Don’t make any sudden turns and don’t brake hard.

Ventilate Your Car

When it rains, humidity levels tend to increase. Because of this, you may notice your windshield and windows start to fog. To combat this and improve your visibility, turn on your car’s ventilation system. As always, if it’s raining very heavily to the point where you can’t see, consider pulling over to the side of the road and wait for weather conditions to improve before moving on.

 

 

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How to Keep Your Baby Safe While You’re Driving

Becoming a parent is one of the most rewarding experiences a person can have in their lifetime. As a parent, wouldn’t you do anything and everything you could to protect your child? Children don’t understand the potential dangers of everyday living, so it’s up to parents to teach them and protect them. Of course, we can’t be with our children every second of every day. For example, when they are in school playing basketball with their friends at recess, it’s possible they may fall and scrape their knee. We can’t have our eyes on them all the time, but we can console them and comfort them when they get injured.

Unlike young children, babies are completely dependent upon their parents. Everything from feeding to clothing to helping them walk, parents need to always be there. Driving with them in the car is no different.

If you want to keep your little ones safe in the car while you’re driving, you’ll want to pay attention to a few important steps:

  1. Choose the Right Car Seat for Your Child

Not all car seats are created equal. Nor do all car seats fit in every car. Depending on the age of your child, you’ll want to choose a car seat that keeps your child secure when you’re on the road.

  1. Don’t Give Toys or Food to Your Baby in the Car

It’s important to remain as safe as possible while you’re driving. It’s a good idea to avoid having loose objects in the car while you’re driving. If your baby is craving attention, it’s best to pull over somewhere safely to give your baby the care he or she needs. Loose toys could cause injuries.

  1. Register Your Car Seat

Just as is the case with car manufacturers recalling their vehicles in the event of a malfunction, car seat manufacturers may tr to notify you of a potential problem they’ve found with their product. An effective way of becoming aware of these product issues is by registering your car seat with the manufacturer. When you do that, if the manufacturer finds a problem, they will notify you by mail.

  1. Install a mirror

A rearview mirror can be small and can leave your vision limited in the event of an emergency. Consider installing a mirror in your backseat, so you can keep a better eye on your little one. You will gain better peace of mind knowing your child is safe because you’ll be able to watch them more closely.

  1. Have the Car Seat’s Installation Checked

If you are not confident your car seat is installed properly, consider having it checked. It’s better to be safe than sorry. There are many public safety departments that offer free installation and safety checks.

  1. Make Sure that Seat Belts are Positioned Properly

Shoulder straps should be positioned at or slightly below the shoulders. The clip should be positioned at about the height of the armpit.

  1. Be Sure That You Car Seat Isn’t Damaged or Expired

Yes, car seats do come with expiration dates. Read your owner’s manual to find the date of when your product was manufactured. You car seat should be replaced at least every six years from the date the car seat was manufactured. Regularly inspect your car seat to check for cracks or breaks or visible defects.

  1. Have Your Baby Face the Rear of Your Vehicle For As Long As PossibleThe American Academy of Pediatrics recommends that all children face the rear of your vehicle at least until they reach the age of two. Another determining factor could be when your child reaches the maximum height and weight that is listed on the car seat. Make sure to pay close attention to that.
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Here’s Why Your Auto Insurance Rate Might Be Higher Than You Expected

Have you ever wondered why your auto insurance rate increased? You probably are not alone in your curiosity. There are several factors that may affect your how much you pay for your auto insurance.

  1. State Requirements

Depending on where you live in the country, the amount you are required to pay for your auto insurance may differ. Each individual state may have certain requirements it deems necessary that would ultimately affect your auto insurance rate. Additionally, if you elect to buy more coverage than what is deemed the bare minimum legally, you will probably end up paying more.

  1. Age

One way auto insurance companies determine what they charge for auto insurance is your age. Because young drivers are far less experienced behind the wheel, insurance companies assume that they will be more likely to get into accidents. Once a driver turns 25, their rates begin to decrease. One the other side of the coin, seniors (those 65 years of age or older) are, oftentimes, charge a higher rate for their insurance because they may have slower reaction times or worsening vision, etc. Additionally, seniors are more likely to become injured if they are involved in an auto collision.

  1. Car Make and Model

If you bought a more expensive car, you are more likely to pay more to insure it. Cars like BMWs or Ferraris are made overseas and are then shipped to the U.S. Because of this, less of these cars are made. Therefore, insurance companies increase the prices to insure these types of vehicles.

  1. High-Risk Violations

Your driving record ultimately affects how much you will end up paying for your auto insurance. If you are a safer driver with less claims on your policy, your insurance company will take note of this and provide you with a lower rate. If you tend to be a more aggressive driver who gets speeding tickets or gets involved in a lot of accidents, your insurance company will see you as a high-risk driver. High-Risk drivers pay more for their insurance than safe drivers do.

  1. Yearly Mileage

The more distance you drive, the more you will end up paying for your auto insurance. Insurance companies consider how often you are on the road when determining your insurance rate. Longer periods of time on the road may mean longer distances traveled. The more amount of time you spend on the road, the higher chance you may become involved in an auto collision. If your commutes tend to be on the shorter side, you may likely pay less for your policy.

  1. Credit History

If you have poor credit, insurance companies may charge you more for your insurance. If you live in a state that is not either California, Massachusetts, or Hawaii, your insurance company will take your credit history into account when determining your insurance rate. If you have a great credit score, you may be able to save some money on your insurance.

 

  1. Driving Record

Drivers with good driving records can pay up to as much as 40% less for their auto insurance than drivers with bad records. This is due to the fact that a lot of insurance companies offer discounts for safe driving. Keep in mind that if you file a lot of claims through your insurance company, regardless of whether or not you were at-fault in the accident, your rates may increase significantly. If you are involved in an accident, do not be surprised if your insurance rate jumps up for the next 3 to 5 years. If you have more experience behind the wheel, you may end up paying less for your insurance. For example, new drivers older than 25 tend to pay more than their peers who have had many years of driving experience.

  1. Zip Code

Where you live may affect your insurance rate. People who live in cities that have higher crime rates statistically or heavy traffic areas tend to be charged more for their insurance. Because rural areas tend to be far less congested, the people who live in these areas likely will be paying less for their insurance policies.

  1. Marital Status

If you are married, you are in luck! Insurance companies look at married couples are the least risky drivers to insure! Compared to other drivers, married couples are involved in 50% less accidents! Do not wait to let your insurance company know if you are married! You could safe yourself some money!

  1. Gender

Believe it or not, in most states, it is not against the law to discriminate by gender. Statistically speaking, men under 25 pay the most for their auto insurance (about 15% more than their female counterparts). Once individuals reach the age of 30, insurance rates tend to become more similar.

 

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